Sen. Mitch McConnell's response to a question about his position on a possible military strike on Syria.
Kentucky’s senior U.S. Senator says while he hasn’t made up his mind on a possible U.S. strike in Syria, he’s certain American military forces won’t be placed inside that country.
Republican Mitch McConnell spoke to the Bowling Green Noon Rotary Club Wednesday, and said even those in Washington who are advocating for U.S. involvement in Syria are stopping short of calling for boots on the ground.
“I’m not just instinctively opposed to military action,” the Louisville Republican said. “I supported the Afghan war, and I supported the Iraq war. Certainly we need to be careful about doing it. I don’t think anybody supports putting any American military personnel there at all.”
McConnell said he would announce his position on Syria “in the coming days.”
The Senate Minority Leader said there’s no way to be certain which political or religious group would take over Syria if the current regime was toppled.
A WKU political analyst says the ongoing debate over possible U.S. military action in Syria comes at an opportune time for Kentucky Senator Rand Paul.
Political Science Professor and Warren County Republican Party Chairman Scott Lasley says Paul has long talked about the U.S. needing to adopt a less aggressive foreign policy. Sen. Paul--who is considering a presidential run--has been a vocal opponent of U.S. military involvement in Syria, saying it’s not in America’s interest to get involved in another nation’s civil war.
Professor Lasley says Paul’s position is something that could attract voters who wouldn’t normally side with the Bowling Green Republican.
“Particularly with younger voters, where Republicans have struggled the last couple of election cycles. A lot of time there’s not a huge difference between younger voters and older voters, but one of the areas that you do see a difference is the aggressiveness of foreign policy.”
The United States on Friday released a declassified version of an intelligence assessment that found with "high confidence that the Syrian government carried out a chemical weapons attack in the Damascus suburbs on August 21, 2013."
Sen. Paul's interview with WKU Public Radio about possible military action in Syria
U.S. Senator Rand Paul spoke to WKU Public Radio Friday about the possibility of U.S. military action against Syria following the regime's alleged use of chemical weapons.
The Bowling Green Republican talked about what the Constitution says about war powers, how the Syria issue is uniting those on the left and right, and he took a not-too-subtle jab at Hillary Clinton, in what could be a preview of a possible 2016 Presidential contest.
Here is the transcript of Sen. Paul's interview with WKU Public Radio's Kevin Willis:
Is a U.S. military strike against Syria inevitable?
"Maybe, maybe not. I'm trying very hard to prevent that from happening. The Constitution is very explicit. The Constitution says Congress gives the authority to declare war, not the President. The President, when he was a Senator, acknowledged this. He said no President should unilaterally go to war without Congressional authority."
Kentucky Senator Rand Paul says the Obama administration has so far not articulated a "clear-cut objective" related to possible military action against Syria.
Speaking to WKU Public Radio Friday morning, Sen. Paul said no U.S. strike should occur unless it's approved by a Congressional vote.
You can read the transcript of the Senator's conversation with WKU Public Radio here.
The Bowling Green Republican said that until he sees the evidence gathered by the U.S. on the chemical weapons attack that allegedly occurred in Syria, he can't be sure who was behind the assault.
"One commentator recently asked the question--it's a Latin phrase--'cui bono?' Whose benefit is this? To whom does the benefit accrue if you have this attack? Well, it doesn't seem to be helping Assad any, it seems to be united the world against him," said Sen. Paul.
"So there is a possibility that maybe the rebels instigated this chemical attack. I would at least want to see the evidence before launching a war."